Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies

Breadcrumb Navigation


"Handbook of Church and Religious History of Slovakia in the 20th Cenutry": Workshop with Martin Schulze Wessel and Klaus Buchenau

Contribution to the Journal of Modern European History on Photography and Dictatorship in the 20th Century


Currently, a "Handbook of Church and Religious History of Slovakia in the 20th Century" has been prepared under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Martin Schulze Wessel and Dr. Martin Zückert at the Collegium Carolinum through the Research Institute for the History of the Czech Lands and Slovakia. The Graduate School supports this project. Recently, a report of the kick-off workshop "Religion - State - Nation: Reflections on a church and religious history of Slovakia in the 20th century" in which Prof. Dr. Klaus Buchenau participated in, another member of the graduate school, was published in the German Humanities & Social Sciences Online portal H-Soz-Kult.

The aim of the handbook is not only to examine the changes and continuities in the religious and religious development of Slovakia. It will also be asked about the relationship between state and religious communities as well as the role of religion and churches in an overall societal context. The relationship between religion and nation, and the interaction between religion and state, set two thematic priorities that should be considered throughout the twentieth century.

Prof. Dr. Klaus Buchenau, professor for Southeast and East European History at the University of Regensburg, presented at the workshop a paper about the relationship between the Croatian Ustascha and the Catholic Church. In both cases, there was a clear ideological intersection between the regime and the Catholic Church. This topic is highly relevant, not least against the background of contemporary Serbian nationalism, which strongly opposes the Catholic Church and Croatian war crimes. In connection with the numerous confessional traditions addressed by Buchenau, Prof. Dr. Martin Schulze Wessel emphasized Slovakia's view as a spatially constructed religious landscape and stressed that such an account could effectively illustrate the role of individual national groups.

The workshop not only provided many ideas for working on the articles but it also highlighted the importance of a non-denominational, transnational perspective, which places its analytical levels beyond classical church historiography, for the success of the project.